Digital Blue and Healthy Alliance Partner to Demonstrate the Value of SDoH (Social Determinants of Health) through Data Aggregation.

-Digital Blue’s Health Care Consulting Team helps Healthy Alliance design and build a trailblazing data factory to ingest and aggregate data throughout Healthy Alliance’s expansive social, behavioral, and clinical provider network. Once aggregated, this data is used to track, analyze, and provide insight into how social determinants of health (SDoH) impact the health of individuals within and across demographic and other categories. 


Healthy Alliance (Alliance for Better Health and its affiliates) connects community members with social needs to its statewide network of 580+ community-based organizations (CBOs) and health care providers spanning 25 counties in New York State. With optimized data operations, Healthy Alliance’s tightly integrated, high-performing network works to improve health, safety, and quality of life for communities and individuals in need, while reducing health care costs. 

Social determinants of health (SdoH) include health and economic risk factors, food challenges, housing insecurities, transportation challenges, and financial hardship information. Patient-level data collected by Healthy Alliance includes data from their referral platform, transportation platform, electronic health records and case management systems, clinical data from health information exchanges (HIEs), and self-reported data from individuals being served by the network. Healthy Alliance uses this data to manage network performance and quality, help improve individuals’ and communities’ health and wellness outcomes, and reduce costs for health plans and providers by ensuring the communities receive all the social assistance available.

The Problem- Ample Unidentified and Underutilized Data

Healthy Alliance had the big challenge of aggregating valuable data coming into Healthy Alliance from various clinical and social care providers within its network. The first challenge was to uniquely identify all data related to a given individual since each organization had its own identifier; there was no unique identifier for each individual across all organizations. Healthy Alliance needed a way to use demographic information and other key attributes to construct this unique identifier. An even bigger challenge was the amount of disparate and underutilized data, which can lead to an incomplete understanding of the data and an inability to produce actionable insights. Identifying and aggregating this data can identify SDoH needs and health disparities and inform targeted interventions to improve health equity, service delivery, and policy decisions for organizations. Healthy Alliance lacked extensive human power to operate software and manually aggregate, store, and analyze its data to deliver this tangible information. 

A Tech Enabled, People-Driven Solution

Healthy Alliance saw the opportunity to partner with Digital Blue based on their proven track record of optimizing business operations for health plans, government programs, and providers. Digital Blue started by defining and architecting a data-driven solution to support Healthy Alliance’s goal to create a SDoH Data Factory. The recommended solution was based on prioritized improvement opportunities within their existing technology stack. As a result, the architecture is poised for growth while being a stable and straightforward technology that meets the urgent need to ingest non-standard data automatically into relational data stores. Additional data sources will continually be added to the data factory, providing incremental but high-impact value to all parties. Data is aggregated across sources, enabling analytics to slice views at multiple levels, including network, region, organizations, individuals, geolocations, service types, health equity variables, and more. 

“We saw the potential that by having that data, we could show the bigger 360 degree view of the person and, in aggregate, be able to tell more of the story about needs, services, and impacts.”

Lynne Olney, Chief Transformation Officer at Healthy Alliance

Preliminary results look promising, showing SDoH data-driven decisions and interventions combined with coordination of a tightly integrated CBO network can lower health care costs and lead to a healthier community in whole.

Learn more about Digital Blue’s SDoH Solution 

Learn more about Healthy Alliance